Pub of the week: The Gallimaufry

21 03 2012

What’s in a name? Marathon is now Snickers. Opal Fruits are now Starburst. Whitelock & Grace on Whiteladies Road is now The Colour Inn. One of the owners of The Colour Inn has now opened The Gallimaufry on the Gloucester Road, and despite its unwieldy moniker, this bar in what used to be The Prom has aspirations to be a typically Bristol quirky watering hole.

‘Gallimaufry’ means making the best out of what’s available to you, and it is in the kitchen for which this new bar could become best known, with today being the first day a full menu is served following Sunday lunch last weekend on its second day of opening.

Head chef John Watson has joined from Casamia, and if Westbury-on-Trym’s Michelin-starred restaurant is not a fertile training ground before branching out from the shadow of the Sanchez-Iglesias brothers, then nothing is.

Sample dishes, with all mains costing under £10, include bubble and squeak; soft boiled egg and beetroot sauce; pork belly, radishes and apple; sausages with stewed lentils; and neck of lamb, courgettes and mint.

The dining area where Watson’s food will be served is situated in the corner room behind the bar, with exposed brickwork and reclaimed furniture, some of which is also positioned on the outside terrace.

Inside, The Gallimaufry is still very much a blank canvas, with an exhibition space in the “curios” area changing regularly and a mural by Dave Bain of woodland creatures playing musical instruments. The signpainting outside was done by graphic designer Jed Palmer, who last summer was responsible for Going Gone Gorilla on Queen Square.

As well as the curios, one other curious aspect here which works really well are old scaffolding planks used as a design feature on a few of the walls and behind the bar featuring Birra Moretti as the pick of the lagers, and Gem and Addlestones on the pumps, two of which remain tantalisingly unused.

Ignore the name. The Gallimaufry will make a name for itself regardless.

The Gallimaufry, 26-28 The Promenade, Gloucester Road, Bristol. 0117 942 7319.